A couple of weeks ago when I was performing at the Moisture Festival, I did a weekend of shows with Tina Lenert. She did her Rings and Silk act, which is fantastic! Here’s a video of the act:
There is soo much magic that happens in that 6 and a half minutes and it’s all pretty strong magic. I think it has almost as many effects per minute that a manipulation act! My favorite part is when she holds the ring behind her back and drops it onto the silk:
It’s a fabulous act, and if you ever get a chance to check it out, I highly recommend it! -Louie
Yesterday I posted about wanting to make a Remote Control Party Popper. I ended redesigning the party popper holder, so that it would fit more securely on the board. The one on the right is the new design, and it’s got a flat bottom to site flat on the board.
You’ll notice that I’m using spools to coil in the string. My first attempt was a lever that pulled them, but I couldn’t get the torque I needed, however the strings constant pull worked well to pull the strings.
Here’s the working version:
Having two that shoot off makes it feel “bigger” and having the second one staggered I think makes it hard to miss. I think people will hear the bang from the first one, but might miss the visual of the streamer. The second one should be seen as the first one will have gotten the attention.
I think if I made it again, I would put the two motors in the same motor housing, which would allow me to make it a little bit smaller. -Louie
One of the cool things about having a 3D printer is it helps me make my ideas a reality, and do it fairly easily. Last week I got the idea in my head of having a remote control party popper. If you don’t know what a party popper is, it’s a little tube with a string. You pull the string, there’s a bang and and little streamers shoot out.
The mechanism is pretty simple, it’s going to be a motor on a remote control. The party popper needs something to hole it in place, so I designed a little holder for it, with a hole in the back:
The plan is to attach this to a board with the battery, remote receiver and motor. To load it, you’ll put in the party popper, tie the string to the motor and when you’re ready, simply push the on button on the remote.
We’ll see if this actually works once I put it together later today… -Louie
The easiest step to being likable onstage is smiling. That’s it. If you can do that you’re soo much closer to the audience liking you.
Smiling makes you look like you want to be there and you are having fun. Yes, there are times you don’t want to smile, and those times should be well thought out. Your default should be a smile.
Many years ago I heard an interview with comedian Neal Brennan on Tom Papa’s podcast Come to Papa. He mentioned that he thought he was smiling onstage, but realized he wasn’t. Onstage you need to smile bigger than you think you need to for it to play to the audience. Hearing that interview really helped my show! -Louie
In Seattle one of the spots that people street perform is at the Pike Place Market. The challenge there is there is a permit system and a lot of rules. However if you cross the street you are still in an area with high tourist traffic and there are no rules.
I was just down there and across the street from the Pike Place Market on the corner, there was a crazy set up for a band doing a street show!
The band didn’t even fit on the corner, they spilled out onto the street. The have their own power supply, five speakers and even a giant umbrella! This is some next level street performing, you can hear them blocks away!
One of the things with most street performers is the ability to be mobile. The time it takes to set up is time you could be performing, I’m going to imagine this set up is a pain to unload from the car and build before you start performing, then you have to take it down at the end of the day. Then you factor in that there are 3-4 people involved and everyone gets a piece of the hat. I’m curious how long they can do this and still be profitable AND how long before they get a ticket for being in the street. They’re set up at a busy intersection.
I do like that they’re doing what they need to do to bring their art to the people! -Louie
In this episode we record on location at Hales Ales where we welcome in Moisture Festival favorite and clown extraordinaire Hilary Chaplain.
Hilary discusses how she develops her material and all the things that goes through her mind when she is debuting a new routine. We cover her over 30 year career that includes her one woman show, a play about a rat, appearing in the movie Forest Gump and clowning at children’s hospitals. We talk about almost everything from her birth in a car to how she came to perform at the Moisture Festival. A great conversation with an even greater performer.
One of the tricks that I do in my show is the Hoop and Glass juggling stunt, I don’t know it’s official name. Last week on my facebook page I posted a gif that I made of pics by John Cornicello that he took at the Moisture Festival.
I had a several performers contact me asking me where to get the hoop. I called my “hoop guy” and had got some extra ones and making them available. You get a hoop and a (plastic) glass for $75 with USA shipping included!
Click here to order the Hoop and Glass props! currently unavailable
If you’re unfamiliar with the Hoop and Glass juggling trick, it’s a classic juggling trick and it’s been in my show for over a decade! The trick is you balance a glass of water on a wooden hoop and then you shake it, spin it and throw it in the air…all without spilling any water.
What I love about this trick is that it plays really big, however the props since it’s a hoop and glass (which are hollow), they don’t take up much space in my case. It’s also a nice break from the magic in my show.
Last week at the Moisture Festival, one of the acts was Just Felice. She’s a street performer out of the Boston area. We did some magic jamming back stage at the festival. Here she is doing an in the hands three card monte routine for one of the stage crew:
We also did some BSing with the second deal, which is a move neither of us really use, but can do. We both have decent technique, but still kill our wrists a lot to hide the move. I think if I ever had a need to use the second deal in a routine, I’d put in the extra time to be able to do it without turning my wrist. For me, the second deal is an emergency move that’s in my tool box. -Louie
Yesterday I posted a video of me trying out a routine using cardboard milk caps in place of coins for a Three Fly style coins across routine. I sat down and wrote out a little routine for it.
These are milk caps, if you were a child of the 90’s they’re POGs and if you’re an alcoholic they’re coasters for your shot glass.
These were used in the early 1900’s to seal glass milk bottles to keep flies out and tuberculosis in.
There are three of them.
They switch hands faster than cooking a rare steak!
The news one goes hand to hand faster than milk goes through someone that’s lactose intolerant!
The last one disappears faster than a vegan in an ice cream parlor!
All three of them move hand to hand faster than you can applaud!
I feel like there should be a joke for the line, “There are three of them”. It could be something silly, like “Three milk caps, one for each of my twins“. That might be what is needed there.
I also don’t know how I feel about the tuberculosis line. It’s an interesting historical line about milk giving people tuberculosis in the 1800’s (read about it here). I don’t think it will get a laugh, and I try to not joke about illnesses. It’s not a dig at anyone who has tuberculosis, it’s a historical joke. People don’t process things with what was in my head when I wrote it, they hear a “trigger word” and there’s nothing you can do to convince them otherwise.